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Modern Lucite Block Coffee Table  Argo Sculpture Gary Gutterman for Axius 1977  For Sale
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Modern Lucite Block Coffee Table Argo Sculpture Gary Gutterman for Axius 1977

About

Argo sculpture / Lucite coffee table by Gary Gutterman for Axius designs 1977. Gary Gutterman (1942-1993) started his design career as a staff designer with Helikon Furniture Company in New York City and then worked three years as a free lance designer under the name of Gary Gutterman Designs before founding Axius Designs in 1971 located in the Gutterman Gallery of Sculpture/Furniture at 160 East 56th Street, New York City. Lucite was Gutterman's main material of interest and he explored and expanded what was possible with the new material throughout his career. In 1977, he set forth on creating a limited edition of 6 "Argo Sculptures" / Coffee tables, huge cast resit blocks, stacked, no sharp corners, approximately 350 lbs. Each was created on-demand at 40,000 USD (approximately 250,000 USD in 2019). According to Mr. Gutterman's son, one of these tables went to Cuba and the other went to Saudi Arabia. The third table is thought to be in the US. The custom built kiln exploded during the fabrication of the fourth table. At that point manufacture of the table was abandoned. This is thought to be the fourth table, unfinished and in all of its mid-explosion glory -- more than 40 years after the fact. The inclusions and color-change, the organic roughness or "earthiness" of this piece juxtaposed against the space-age, "synthetic" nature of its material is a profound statement as to the capacity for human innovation and insight that is borne out of the natural world yet will forever be bound by that nature. A brief primer on Poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA): Also known as acrylic, acrylic glass, or plexiglass as well as by the trade names Crylux, Plexiglas, Acrylite, Lucite, and Perspex among several others. It is a transparent thermoplastic often used as an alternative to glass, as a casting resin, in inks and coatings, and many other uses. The substance, like many thermoplastics, is often technically classified as a type of glass (in that it is a non-crystalline vitreous substance) hence its occasional historical designation as acrylic glass. Chemically, it is the synthetic polymer of methyl methacrylate. The material was developed in 1928 in several different laboratories by many chemists, such as William Chalmers, Otto Röhm, and Walter Bauer, and was first brought to market in 1933 by German Röhm & Haas AG (as of January 2019 part of Evonik Industries) and its partner and former U.S. affiliate Rohm and Haas Company under the trademark Plexiglas. Both Perspex and Plexiglas were commercialized in the late 1930s. In the United States, E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Company (now DuPont Company) subsequently introduced its own product under the trademark Lucite. During World War II both Allied and Axis forces used acrylic glass for submarine periscopes and aircraft windshields, canopies, and gun turrets. Airplane pilots whose eyes were damaged by flying shards of PMMA fared much better than those injured by standard glass, demonstrating better compatibility between human tissue and PMMA than glass. Civilian applications followed after the war. The material has high dimensional stability and good resistance to weathering and to shock; it is colorless and highly transparent, but can be tinted or rendered opaque by the addition of other substances. It is usually fabricated by molding into solid articles or casting into sheets. An object made of polymethyl methacrylate displays the unusual property of keeping a beam of light reflected within its surfaces and thus carrying the beam around bends and corners of a pipe, bundle of threads, or sheet and reflecting it out through the ends or edges.

Details

  • Condition
  • Condition Details
    Desirable patina - fissures, wear, color change, etc.
  • Wear
    Wear consistent with age and use. Minor structural damages.
  • Dimensions
    H 14 in. x W 53 in. x D 32 in.H 35.56 cm x W 134.62 cm x D 81.28 cm
  • Seller Location
    Brooklyn, NY
  • Reference Number
    LU4190314880412
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About the Seller

5 / 5
Vetted
Platinum
1stdibs seller since 2018
Typical response time: <1 hour
Located in Brooklyn, NY
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